Electronics: The Green Perspective

It’s not surprising that the world is so much different now. Stronger storms, flash floods, and warmer weather are only a few to call. With that, waiting is no longer an option, unlike perhaps twenty years ago when almost no industry actually gave a crap about being environmentally friendly. Now, however, the environment is already hitting a critical state, with environmental catastrophes literally decades away if the rate of pollution continues to rise. Standards for both efficiency and recyclability are becoming much more stricter, and many companies are having a hard time keeping up. Let us look into the state by which the technology industry stands in comparison to the environmentalist movement.

The 1990s was a decade that saw major shifts in technological power. While the 90s was dedicated to finding one’s place in the tech hierarchy through powerful hardware, software advances and proprietary protocols, the current era is more dedicated to complying to universally accepted standards and fixing what was broken in the previous decade. Speaking of broken, the 90s was actually a time when CRT-monitors and power-hungry systems, now condemned by modern standards, were all the craze. Now the phase to LED-based monitors and recyclable components is imminent.

With a greener tech world almost absolutely needed, organizations such as the EPA and RoHS are continuously making stricter the requirements for an environmentally friendly system. Some companies are rushing to the top as Green Manufacturer, others are emphasizing on a specific field, while others would rather wait until an environmental lawsuit is filed against them. It is this sad reality that only a handful of companies are actually trying to push for the green future, while others continue to market toxic products in the hopes that the public will not care.

However, if we do look into the efforts of the caring companies, we can expect a greener future in the years ahead. Nokia, for example, is leading the efforts on recycling e-waste. Apple is also emerging from the shadows of environmental condemnation, phasing out toxic chemicals and lowering power-consumption even before strict standards are made effective. If only all companies did the same, toxic chemicals would be history sooner than you think.

I do think that we still have a long way to go. It may take us a while to get rid of that habit we had in the 90s, in that we have so much to clean up after. Companies are doing something about it and the numbers they present justify such. Organizations do, however, have to push other companies to do the same, since the state of the environment is really no joke. In the meantime, we might as well do our part. Continue to switch off lights and save on water and we might see some dramatic improvements in the near future.


~ by Ian on September 28, 2009.

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